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Microsoft, Yahoo amend 10-year search partnership in Marissa Mayer's biggest move yet

By Shawn Knight
Apr 17, 2015
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  1. microsoft yahoo agree amend search partnership yahoo bing search steve ballmer advertising carol bartz partnership marissa mayer satya nadella web search bing ads

    In 2009, Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer entered into a partnership in which Microsoft would supply Yahoo with all of its desktop search results and ads via Bing. Yahoo, in turn, would be responsible for selling Bing ads to potential advertisers.

    The idea was that by joining forces, the duo would be able to better compete with Google. Considering the Mountain View-based company controlled nearly 65 percent of all US desktop searches last month, it’s clear that the partnership wasn’t very effective.

    On Thursday, Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer and Microsoft’s Satya Nadella announced the two sides had amended the original 10-year agreement.

    microsoft yahoo agree amend search partnership yahoo bing search steve ballmer advertising carol bartz partnership marissa mayer satya nadella web search bing ads

    Moving forward (albeit gradually), only 51 percent of search results and ads will be provided by Microsoft’s Bing. Yahoo is free to do what it wants with the remaining 49 percent. Furthermore, Yahoo is no longer required to sell Bing ads – all of which is great news for Mayer and company.

    Under the original agreement, Microsoft gave Yahoo 90 percent of the revenue from Bing ads shown on Yahoo. As The New York Times points out, this part of the agreement will remain unchanged for the 51 percent of Bing ads that will continue to run on Yahoo.

    The web pioneer has plenty of options on the table in terms of how to monetize the 49 percent of search traffic it gets. The obvious answer would be for Yahoo to strike up a deal with Google although a partnership with Facebook may be worth looking into.

    By no longer having to sell ads for Bing, Yahoo will no doubt be able to cut some costs by downsizing its ad sales department. Microsoft, meanwhile, will now need to hire its own Bing ad sales team.

    Image courtesy Bloomberg News via WSJ

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  2. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,514   +2,058

    Google controlled only 65% of desktop searches? Surprising, I thought that figure would be much closer to 100%. I mean, who the hell thinks of using Bing anyway?
     
  3. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,562   +2,368

    Plenty of people. Bing is actually a surprisingly competent search engine.

    When Google rolls out their "fact-based" ranking system, Bing will be even more popular.
     
    Skidmarksdeluxe likes this.
  4. edwould

    edwould TS Rookie

    Bing has gotten a lot better lately. I prefer it over Google for the first time since it's debut. Video searching allows for previewing the individual results at several different points in the video and is very fast. It also shows optional variations on the key words searched. It's dressed up much more so than Google. Likewise with image searches. Overall, it's become more sophisticated than Google at multiple levels and the search engine itself seems to be as accurate. No, I don't work for Microsoft, I'm not that big a fan. But occasionally they get it together.
     
  5. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,514   +2,058

    Nice. I might just check it out soon.
     

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